The Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) hopes the Serum Institute of India (SII) will resume exports of the AstraZeneca vaccine from this quarter. It is earlier than the firm's forecast of the end of this year, as Reuters reports.
“We remain hopeful that SII deliveries will resume in the third quarter, however, this cannot be confirmed at this stage,” a GAVI spokesperson said.
GAVI co-leads the COVAX facility for equitable distribution of COVID-19 shots around the world. COVAX suffered a big jolt in April when big vaccine producer India stopped all overseas shipments to meet local demand as infections rose dramatically.
India's coronavirus crisis has now eased and output of the AstraZeneca drug at SII, the world's biggest vaccine maker, has also jumped, but so has domestic demand.
An Indian government source said a decision on exports might be made next month when the country's COVID-19 vaccine output is expected to rise further. A source close to SII said the company was focused on supplying to India for now.
It is also known that SII could restart supplies to Bangladesh from August.
Vaccination against coronavirus continues in the world. In total, more than 3 billion people have been vaccinated and 895 million people have been fully vaccinated. India has so far administered 358.1 million vaccine doses - the most in the world after China - giving at least one dose to 31% of its estimated adult population of 944 million.
As it was reported earlier, in Ukraine, more than 2.1 million people received a single dose of vaccine, more than 955 thousand people were fully vaccinated.